If I have learned anything about professional wrestling in the 40-plus years of being a fan, the one thing that sticks out is that history tends to repeat itself.
I mentioned a couple of weeks ago to our fearless wrestling leader, Jon Blayne, I thought there was potential or a new heel stable. The addition of Samoa Joe to Monday nights, combined with his connections to Triple H set the wheels in motion. Add his recent involvement with Kevin Owens, and my suspicions continue to grow.
On Monday night, Dash and Dawson, the two-time NXT tag team champions, mad their main roster debut taking apart The New Day. It’s quite possible the mission is complete.
For some reason, and nothing has been confirmed yet, I cannot get the idea out of my head that these four individuals are a new incarnation of a heel stable run by the COO of WWE.
It’s not a bad thing, rather something that may be long overdue. If Vince McMahon is true to his word, and there are shake-ups in both Monday and Tuesday night programming, what better way to stir the pot than to create a mega heel faction that is as dominant as both the Horsemen and Evolution were in days gone by?
As a fan who grew up rooted in the NWA with the greatest faction ever created, I find it hard to believe in revisionist history. No group will ever replace Ric Flair, Arn Anderson, Tully Blanchard or Barry Windham. There have been many different incarnations of the group that made wrestling stables famous. Most of them failed. Evolution – which was the brainchild of Triple H – was created with Flair’s help to give WWE its own version of the Horsemen. Like its predecessor, it was extremely successful. Triple H, Flair, Batista and Randy Orton were as close to perfection ever organized.
Now, the company is trying to reinvent the wheel using Kevin Owens as the ringleader, with the help of the enforcer Samoa Joe, and arguably the most underrated tag team combination that is not on the main roster – until now.
I like the concept of one badass stable that dominates Monday nights. I wonder in theory if fans today will be as excepting of such a program as they were back in the 1980s and 90s. Storylines had more depth. Wrestlers were better at selling matches on the microphone. Promos meant something. Wrestlers got heat in more conventional situations. It was a different time in wrestling history. And the Four Horsemen were perfect for the era.
WWE tried to create a mega heel stable with the League of Nations. Alberto Del Rio and Wade Barrett are no longer in the company. Rusev is nothing more than a jobber. Sheamus survived the fallout. If this is to be successful, there must be little change in character. Owens must still be the brash Canadian. Joe must be the silent assassin. Dash and Dawson must be Blanchard and Anderson all over again.
In a perfect wrestling world, this is the most successful stable since Evolution. But it only works if it is booked properly and the fans accept it. If the fans in the arena don’t buy what the company is selling, this will fail mightily. And with that, another opportunity to sell something great will plunder in a company that has been working so hard to promote success with new branding.